PHOENIX METRO BICYCLE CLUB
pmbcaz.org The Hub: January 2013

The Hub: January 2013
Reports, News, Memos, Ride Reviews, Stories, Etc.
Updated 1/27/2013

January 2013
January 26 Saturday Cycling Report
  The Joy of Riding in the Rain. By Ken St.John.
January 19 Saturday Cycling Report
  Tour de Mesa Longer Than Advertised. By Ken St.John.
January 12 Saturday Cycling Report
  Thirty-Three Hardy Cyclists on Sub-Freezing Start of Tour de Sue. By Ken St.John.
January 6 Spin Cycle Report
  14 Brave Souls Take On The Morning Frost on Metro Mania. By Glen Fletcher.
January 5 Saturday Cycling Report
  South Mountain: Last Saturday Cycling Ride of 2012. By Ken St.John.


January 26 Saturday Cycling Report
The Joy of Riding in the Rain

Added January 27, 2013
written by Ken St.John

Hello Saturday Cyclists,

Roger and me. That's everyone who showed up to experience the joy of riding in the rain today. I brought my belt-drive, full-fender commuting machine, and Roger rode a single speed so I could keep up with him on the hills. The rain was perpetual. Many of the bike lanes were flooded. And 48th street was closed due to flooding of the wash at Warner, as demonstrated by the stranded car we saw in the middle. We easily passed through on the opposite sidewalk. Pure cycling adventure.

It reminded me of another rainy Saturday, 8 or 10 years ago, when 5 people showed up at the start. The three who drove to the park packed it up and went home. The other two soldiered on; Roger and me. That day we ignored the scheduled route and went climbing in the foothills on a path that would later be mapped and released as the Foothills Training ride.

Coming up...

Note: February start time changes to 8:00am!

Saturday, 02/02/13 8:00 Kiwanis Park. Marco Polo
Designed to stretch us to the eastern limits of our range. The 26 mile standard route goes east on Guadalupe for 12, then loops back on Elliot. The 41 mile long route keeps going east all the way to Ellsworth, then loops to the south before joining the Elliot return path. Breakfast at Paradise Bakery on Guadalupe and McClintock. Sunrise: 7:23

Saturday, 02/09/13 8:00 Kiwanis Park. Ahwafooty
Since most of you missed this ride due to rain, let's try again. Luck-7's is moved to 2/23. We'll circle around to approach the Ahwatukee-Foothills from the South. 24 mile or 35 mile options with moderate climbing on the longer route. Breakfast at AZ Bread Co. at Kyrene and Elliot. Sunrise: 7:18

Saturday, 02/16/13 8:00 Kiwanis Park. McKellips Loop
This 28-mile, or 37-mile loop from Kiwanis Park will take you north through Tempe and then east through Mesa on McKellips Road, returning to Paradise Bakery for breakfast. Sunrise: 7:11

Tidbits...

We're rolling out another new route next Saturday. The map will be posted on the web site very soon, if it's not there already. Named in honor of the famed 13th century explorer who journeyed eastward from Italy all the way to China, the Marco Polo route is designed to stretch us to the east as far as our mileage standards and decent roads will allow. The standard route simply goes due east for 13 miles, then makes a clockwise loop back on Elliot.

If you'd like a short break from the motor vehicle traffic, the Eastern Canal trail is just -mile before the turn on Higley. It forms the eastern border of the Riparian Preserve, and you'll likely see some horses on the other side. If you do take this option, please dial down the speed, be courteous to the other trail users, and don't fall in the canal!

The long route continues another 5 miles east to Ellsworth, loops south to Ray near the Mesa Gateway Airport, and eventually rejoins the standard route on Elliot by way of Cooper.

The first regroup is 11 miles out at Val Vista, and was selected as the last available on the right side of the street before the routes diverge. They only have one restroom, but it is available for our use. The second regroup, 17 miles further at Ray and Val Vista, was the first available after the turn on Ellsworth. There isn't much out there, which also means fewer traffic lights!

I test rode the full route, and with the exception of a couple of short segments here and there, these are very wide, bicycle friendly streets. There's always risk of construction projects out on the fringe. A major overpass was going up across Ray just west of Ellsworth, but it was not a problem the day I went. It even had a Share-the-Road construction sign.

I look forward to your feedback, as always.

Ride safely

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January 19 Saturday Cycling Report
Tour de Mesa Longer Than Advertised

Added January 20, 2013
written by Ken St.John

Hello Saturday Cyclists,

Welcome back! We had 65 cyclists sign in this beautiful morning - twice as many as last week. I got to meet, ride and chat with 3 new people today; that's always fun. It turns out that the Tour de Mesa has been an over-40 route all along. We confirmed today that the standard route is actually 32 miles and the advanced is a full 44, contrary to the 29/39 claimed on the map.

Coming up...

Saturday, 01/26/13 8:30 Kiwanis Park. Ahwafooty
We'll circle around to approach the Ahwatukee-Foothills from the South. 24 mile or 35 mile options with moderate climbing on the longer route. Breakfast at AZ Bread Co. at Kyrene and Elliot. Sunrise: 7:28

Note: February start time changes to 8:00am!

Saturday, 02/02/13 8:00 Kiwanis Park. New Route to the East??
I plan to have a new route map ready to go. It is designed to stretch our limits to the east. It will be flat, fast and easy to follow. The long route will be over 40 miles. Sunrise: 7:23

Saturday 02/09/13 8:00 Kiwanis Park. Lucky 7's
In response to the survey results, Scott has modified this map to add a third, 47 mile extra-long option. The route still loops clockwise to the south and takes advantage of some of the new roads over by the Wild Horse Pass casino/resort area. The name plays off the mileage options of 27 and 47 miles, plus the two casinos along the way. Breakfast is at AZ bread Co at Kyrene and Elliot. Sunrise: 7:18

Tidbits...

I had a fun time on the Casa Grande Century last Sunday! A big round of applause goes to Jules, Janet and Armando who teamed up to coordinate the event, and to the army of volunteers who succeeded in making it a great ride for the rest of us. For those who thought it was too cold to ride, I can only say: Was not! Was not! Was not!

Naturally, there was conversation over breakfast about the Oprah-Lance interview. It seems now to be less about doping and more about personal integrity. Now that Lance has admitted that his pants were on fire for years, and that he was a big bad bully, it's harder to admire him personally. But I still say you can never negate the great things he did for cycling in America and for cancer sufferers everywhere. I'll always be grateful for that, and in awe of his athletic ability enhanced or not.

Ride safely

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January 12 Saturday Cycling Report
Thirty-Three Hardy Cyclists on Sub-Freezing Start of Tour de Sue

Added January 13, 2013
written by Ken St.John

Hello Saturday Cyclists,

Thirty-three hardy cyclists signed up for the sub-freezing start of Tour de Sue. I hope the rest of you still come out tomorrow for the Casa Grande Century. It really wasn't that bad this morning. Just double up on your normal winter-ware, and enjoy another beautiful, sunny, windless (we hope) day.

Coming up...

Saturday, 01/19/13 8:30 Kiwanis Park. Tour de Mesa
The Tour de Mesa takes us to the northeast, with route options of 29 miles with no climbing or 39 miles with a gentle climb. Breakfast is at Paradise Bakery @ Guadalupe & McClintock. Sunrise: 7:31

Saturday, 01/26/13 8:30 Kiwanis Park. Ahwafooty
We'll circle around to approach the Ahwatukee-Foothills from the South. 24 mile or 35 mile options with moderate climbing on the longer route. Breakfast at AZ Bread Co. at Kyrene and Elliot. Sunrise: 7:28

Saturday, 02/02/13 8:00 Kiwanis Park. New Route to the East?
I plan to have a new route map ready to go. It is designed to stretch our limits to the east. It will be flat, fast and easy to follow. The long route will cover over 40 miles. Sunrise: 7:24

Tidbits...

I've been having more fun with data. Thank you to the 152 people who took the trouble to answer the Saturday Cycling Survey for 2012! Attached is my analysis of the results. A sampling of comments is provided where they helped to illuminate each topic. The full list of (anonymous) comments have been provided to the board, so no one's voice went unheard. The #1 take-away: you can't please everyone!

Here's a quick summary of the actions I'm planning to take based on the survey results:

  • One route will be removed from the regular rotation
  • At least one route will be revised
  • New and revised routes will lean towards more mileage on the advanced segment
  • Oct-Dec start time will be moved 1/2 hour later; in May we will start 1/2 hour earlier

Your feedback is always welcome. Getting it in one big ka-chunk was really helpful.

Here is another survey-like opportunity: ADOT is asking for public comment on the update of their "Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan to improve safety and multimodal travel options." Visit http://www.azbikeped.org/studyupdate/documents.asp before Feb 8 to review and comment.

Ride safely

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January 6 Spin Cycle Report
14 Brave Souls Take On The Morning Frost on Metro Mania

Added January 6, 2013
written by Glen Fletcher

I haven't done a ride report in ages, but todays ride just inspired me. While we had 14 brave souls take on the morning frost, we made our way around most of the east valley hitting towns, cities, nations, and villages along the way. However, the best part was heading down McKellips when Mr. Hot Air himself was dropped like a sack of his own potatoes. Roger calls out from the back, "Oh no, they are dropping my daddy!" I know, brings a tear to your eye.

Of course, the rest of the ride was very quiet, no laughing or joking or anything. Happy New Year everyone, time to get out and ride.

On that thought, we have our annual Casa Grande Century ride coming up next week. Remember, Sunday Spin Cycle will not ride from Desert Breeze, but support our club ride and start around 8:30 for most riders. Location is Chandler Heights and Alma School. Recommend that you pre-register to avoid the long lines.

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January 5 Saturday Cycling Report
MidSummer Ride in Mid-Winter

Added January 6, 2013
written by Ken St.John

Hello Saturday Cyclists,

Our numbers are increasing at the start of the new year. Seventy-seven signed in to do a mid-winter edition of the MidSummer Ride. I'm hoping many of you resolved to ride your bikes more in 2013. I hear some resolved not to ride again till the morning lows climb back above 40.

Coming up...

Saturday, 01/12/13 8:30 Kiwanis Park. Tour de Sue
A flat loop to the south, with route options of 25 or 35 miles. Both routes include a good long stretch with no traffic lights. Breakfast stop at AZ Bread Co in Tempe at Kyrene and Elliot.

Saturday, 01/19/13 8:30 Kiwanis Park. Tour de Mesa
The Tour de Mesa takes us to the northeast, with route options of 29 miles with no climbing or 39 miles with a gentle climb. Breakfast is at Paradise Bakery at Guadalupe & McClintock.

Saturday, 01/26/13 8:30 Kiwanis Park. Ahwafooty
We'll circle around to approach the Ahwatukee-Foothills from the South. Options include a 24-mile or 35-mile routes with moderate climbing on the longer route. Breakfast at AZ Bread Co. at Kyrene and Elliot.

Tidbits...

2012 is over, and PMBC finished in 4th place on Bikejournal.com's club competition. Here is the data for the top 5 actual local clubs, like ours:

ClubLocation# riders on BJ.CTotal miles
Richmond Area Bicycling AssociationRichmond, VA253349,364
PMBCPhoenix, AZ70304,632
Space City Cycling ClubHuoston, TX83219,669
Memphis HightailersMemphis, TN81201,755
Cycling ConnectionRancho Cucamonga, CA54136,122

Clearly PMBC achieves more with less! After 1 week, we are already a couple hundred miles ahead of Richmond in 2013 (the slackers).

My 93 miles/week average didn't even get me in the PMBC top 20. Here is a chart that shows our club's top 10 participators. The trick is to figure out who is who.

PMBC Milage Top 10

The survey data is still being crunched. Should be ready by next week's report.

Ride safely

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pmbcaz.org The Hub: January 2013